Environmental group jumps aboard renewable lobby bandwagon

A respected Canadian environmental organisation has joined the growing list of groups urging the federal government to support renewable energy in its year 2000 budget. The Vancouver-based David Suzuki Foundation says Canada needs to take its "first step" in the development of a sustainable energy strategy. "This transition is already underway in many of the most successful economies of the world," the foundation says. By following their lead, it argues, Canada can meet its Kyoto climate change commitments and strengthen its economy. The foundation outlines a series of initiatives, including a renewable energy production credit and a consumer credit for agricultural renewables generation. The government could help build a domestic market for sustainable power by agreeing to buy 20% of its electricity by 2005 from low impact renewables. If two-thirds was provided by wind, the foundation says, it would double the country's installed capacity. Canada should also shift support away from fossil fuels and introduce a carbon tax.